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Beginners Guide to Installing Tile Backsplash

If you’re looking for a simple and inexpensive home improvement project, consider installing a tile backsplash in your kitchen. It adds to the aesthetic of your kitchen or bathroom and is a functional element in your space. At Grand Homes, we’ve been building extraordinary homes for over 30 years, and we’ll share our expertise in creating your beautiful tile backsplash with you.

Measure the Space You’ll Install the Backsplash

Take measurements of the length and width of the area where you want to install the tiles, then multiply those numbers to get the square footage. This helps you determine the number of tiles you’ll need for the project.

Choose Your Tile

The three most popular types of backsplash tiles are:

  •         Ceramic Tile. It is a cost-effective, lightweight, long-lasting, and simple-to-install material for your kitchen.
  •         Glass Tile. Although it is a bit pricey and requires careful installation, it adds a touch of elegance to your kitchen.
  •         Stone/Marble Tile. This is the most expensive tile but also the most durable and luxurious-looking tile.

When choosing, consider the tiles’ pattern, shape, color, and texture. At Grand Homes, we select the perfect tile for your home when you hire us to design and build your home.

Prep the Area

Remove everything from the countertops and tile installation area. If you’re installing the tiles on new construction, clean the wall to remove construction debris. For an existing wall, clean the area with TSP (trisodium phosphate) to remove grease, dirt, or food splatters before installing the tiles.

Fill Any Gaps or Cracks

Use caulk to fill in any cracks or gaps in the wall. Pay special attention to corners and areas where two walls meet, as these are problem areas. Allow the caulk to dry completely. This creates a smooth surface for tile adhesive and prevents water damage.

Mark the Layout on the Wall

Use a level and tape measure to find the center point of the area, then use a pencil to mark it on the wall. With a chalk line, draw vertical and horizontal lines through the center point, creating a cross. This helps you install your tile in a straight line.

Apply Mortar to the Wall

Mix the mortar according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Use an acrylic latex thin-set mortar for this project. Using a notched trowel, spread the mortar on the wall at 45 degrees to create evenly spaced ridges. Spread it in a thin, even layer, working your way up the wall.

Install the Tiles

Starting at the bottom corner, begin installing the tiles onto the wall. Use a level to level each tile level as you install. Apply pressure to the tile to set it into the mortar. Using mosaic tiles, use a mosaic tile nipper to cut the pieces to fit around outlets and other obstacles.

Continue installing tiles until the entire area is covered, ensuring that each one is properly seated in the mortar bed. Let them sit overnight to set up properly before grouting them. 

Grout the Backsplash Tile

Mix the grout according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Apply it to the joints between the tiles using a rubber float held at a 45-degree angle. Spread it evenly, working it into all the joints. Wait for the grout to set up for the recommended time, then use a damp sponge to wipe the extra grout.

Install Backsplash Tiles to Update Your Kitchen

Installing a tile backsplash in your kitchen modernizes the space and adds value to your home. Follow these simple steps to install one in your kitchen. Choose the right tile for your kitchen, prep the area, apply mortar to the wall, and then install the tile.

At Grand Homes, we design and build extraordinary homes for homeowners and help them create their dream kitchens. Contact us today to find out more information about our services.